Especially if you've been working from home, you may find that you need tax help before tax time comes around. When dealing with the IRS, you want to be very accurate about your income and the taxes you owe as a self-employed business owner or as an independent contractor. Below, you will find several reliable resources for your tax related questions.
First, take your questions to the official IRS website at www.irs.gov. There you will find a useful FAQ section, as well as a search function. You can also find current news regarding changes to tax laws and the tax code, as well as filing recommendations and information about tax filing software. The IRS website can also help you find free and low cost tax software for completing your taxes and filing electronically.
Your Local Library
Most library branches have a copy of the current tax code and laws on hand in the reference section. If you are looking for specific information about the tax code, this is a good option. You can also find tax forms at the local library during tax time.
Internet Tax Advice
There are many places on the Internet to go for tax help. Articles, forums and tax preparation websites abound. Just be certain to double-check any information you read or advice you receive before making a decision about your taxes based on information you find on the Internet. There are several free forums devoted to tax help like the About Taxes forum at www.about.com or www.forum.freeadvice.com. Note that you are not necessarily getting expert legal advice on these forums, but suggestions and ideas from people who have been in a tax situation similar to yours.
If you work from home and you simply need reliable software to complete your taxes (without paying a tax preparer hundreds of dollars), then there are many choices for tax software. TurboTax and TaxCut by H & R Block are popular tax software programs that also both offer audit support should the unthinkable happen to you. If your gross adjusted income is less than $56,000, you can qualify for free tax filing services. More information about free file is available at www.irs.gov.
Consult an Expert
If you have tax related questions or concerns, possibly the best and most reliable option is to ask an expert. This could be a certified public accountant, tax attorney or other tax preparation specialist. Because it is their job to know the tax code and tax laws, they are a natural choice for answering your specific tax questions. They may even offer a free up front consultation that you can take advantage of to get your tax questions answered, whether you decide to use them in the future or not.
Whether you try all of the above or go straight to your CPA, be certain to get the tax help you need before you file your taxes to avoid unnecessary headaches with the IRS.